Countdown To Kick-Off | Finals Football

An Elimination Final awaits for our Women’s side while our Men travel to Wellington.

Aotearoa Awaits

Coming off of a thrilling Derby win, Tony Popovic’s side now travel to Wellington as they look for a top-two finish.

An electric atmosphere set the scene at AAMI Park, in a game with significant ramifications for both teams as the season neared its conclusion.

Bruno Fornaroli and Damien Da Silva fired Victory to a dramatic Melbourne Derby win to put our boys in blue into third place on the Isuzu UTE A-League table.

Now having won three of our last four matches, the race for the Premier’s Plate is heating up, with Victory now only five points off top spot.

Friday night in Wellington has now turned into a “six-point match”, with a win against the Nix only strengthening the team’s chances of finishing top two.

Wellington is coming off a loss to now-league leaders Central Coast. The Nix suffered a 2-1 defeat in Gosford, with the Mariners now level on points with Wellington.

The Nix have won three of their last five matches, with their last loss at home coming all the way back in early December.

Finals Football

Jeff Hopkins’ side play finals football once again when they face the Central Coast Mariners on Sunday afternoon at the Home of The Matildas.

A home Elimination Final is crucial for our girls in blue to progress to the Semi-Final, with Victory set to face either Melbourne City or Sydney FC, should they progress.

Our girls in blue won three of their last five matches, only losing one in that stretch, to ensure they finished fourth on the Liberty A-League table and secured a home final.

The Mariners also finished the season strong, winning three of their last five, but ended the season with a loss and a draw.

Sunday’s matchup will be the first time Victory face the Mariners in a finals series, with Central Coast having made their long-awaited return to the league this season.

It was a 1-1 the last time we faced Central Coast, with Emily Gielnik Victory’s lone goal scorer in Gosford.

Undefeated Academy

Victory came into last week’s match against Werribee seeking to extend their lead on top of the VPL1 ladder, but an away game in Werribee is rarely a straightforward task.

The visitors made a promising start, as a powerful header from Adem Duratović following a set piece drew a strong save from the Werribee goalkeeper in the opening minutes.

Jesse Hoey also had an early chance, but was unable to beat the goalkeeper from a tight angle.

The hosts though soon settled into the game, creating a more even contest for the majority of the half.

The deadlock was set to remain unbroken as half-time approached, but just before the break, a superb attacking move breached the Werribee defence.

A series of slick passes ended with Luka Kolić being played through in the box, before cutting it back to the feet of Adem Duratović who opened the scoring from close range.

A brilliant move just before half-time, handing Victory a narrow advantage heading into the second 45.

The narrow advantage was widened soon after the re-start, as Hoey drew a foul inside the box to earn his team a penalty.

Luka Kolić stepped up to convert the spot-kick, sending the keeper the wrong way to double Victory’s lead.

Victor Muhindo was substituted into the game soon after the second goal, replacing Hoey who had been on the receiving end of a firm challenge minutes earlier

The third goal arrived in the 63rd minute, when the ball came to Eli Adams in plenty of space on the edge of the box, before the winger cleverly curled his shot past the goalkeeper.

Werribee pulled one goal back as the game entered its final 15 minutes, scraping past goalkeeper Daniel Graskoski who had made several impressive saves on debut.

Joe Palatsides made full use of his bench as the game edged towards its conclusion, bringing Kayne Razmovski, Dimi Palatsides, Damien Bozinovski and Marc Petheriotis into the game.

The drama continued deep into the contest, with Werribee being shown three red cards in the final minutes of action, as tensions boiled over on the pitch.

Victory took advantage of their numerical advantage in the final minute of the game, when Marc Petheriotis scored his side’s fourth of the evening.

A commanding performance away from home by Victory, whose incredible start to the VPL1 season continues for another week.